Rafa Benitez hailed the support of the Everton fans as his side snatched a late victory against Arsenal.
Demarai Gray's outstanding stoppage-time finish secured the hosts a deserved victory at Goodison Park, despite it appearing for a long time that Everton would be unfortunate on a night they largely dominated.
Twice the intervention of the video assistant referee (VAR) showed that Richarlison had strayed just offside in the build-up to goals that were subsequently over-turned.
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The Brazilian would eventually find the back of the net legitimately at the third time of asking, equalising ten minutes from time after Martin Ødegaard had put Arsenal ahead.
And up popped Gray at the last to secure a victory that a promising performance from Everton merited
Limited numbers of the home crowd had made their frustrations at the club clear by staging a temporary walkout 27 - the number of years since Everton last won a trophy - minutes in to the game.
However Benitez said that unity at the club will be important as he looks to build upon a first win in eight games.
"When everybody sticks together, we are stronger," Benitez told Sky Sports. Everybody is really pleased - fans, players, staff, everyone. Hopefully it is a step forward.
"The VAR was against us, but, still, the reaction was brilliant. We have been close in a lot of games to getting something.
"Everything was against us, but the reaction and character that they showed today, everyone can enjoy that."
The first-half protest followed a weekend of upheaval at Everton, with director of football Marcel Brands leaving the club three-and-a-half years on from a heralded arrival on Merseyside.
After a bright start to the Premier League season, a prolonged run of poor performances had seen pressure begin to build on Benitez, who was appointed to succeed Carlo Ancelotti in the summer.
Victory over Arsenal was thus timely, though Everton remain in the bottom half, in 12th place.
The Spaniard had boldy left out left-back Lucas Digne from his starting side, selecting Ben Godfrey ahead of the Frenchman.
The former Norwich defender responded with a solid showing, though was perhaps fortunate a stray boot to the face of Takehiro Tomiyasu was not interpreted differently by referee Mike Dean and the VAR.
Benitez played down talk of a falling out with Digne at full-time, suggesting that Godfrey had deserved a chance to start.
"The priority is the team. We have to concentrate on the team. Ben Godfrey did really well last year so I thought he could be a good option today.
"Ben Godfrey is a good player and we have to get the best from him."
Defeat means Arsenal remain seventh have fallen behind both Manchester United and Tottenham, who have a game in hand, this weekend.
"We were very inconsistent with the ball," reflected a disappointed Mikel Arteta. "No penetration, no threat - totally contrary to what we wanted to do.

Mikel Arteta, Manager of Arsenal applauds the fans prior to the Premier League match between Everton and Arsenal at Goodison Park on December 06, 2021 in Liverpool, England.

Image credit: Getty Images

"We kept giving the ball way, sloppy passes, sloppy touches. It wasn't good enough."
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